May 10, 2024 

Locked On Women’s Basketball: How rare gems in Minnesota helped build pro women’s basketball

'These are shining examples that have helped lead us ... to where we are now'

In the latest episode of Locked On Women’s Basketball, host Jackie Powell welcomes Howard Megdal, the founder and editor-in-chief of The Next, to discuss Megdal’s new book. The book, “Rare Gems: How Four Generations of Women Paved the Way For the WNBA,” explores decades of pioneers in women’s basketball that has roots in the state of Minnesota. The pioneers featured in the book include, by generation:

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Megdal talks about his inspiration for the book:

“It was amazing to me how many connections there were between these generations: how what one generation did influenced the one that came after, but also how those who came after helped influence and change the way that people like Peps and Vicky thought about women’s basketball as well. And so just the more I dug into it, the more it felt to me like there are these absolutely interlocking connections. We think of history, and women’s basketball history no differently, as something that was in some ways preordained, and it simply wasn’t.”

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Megdal explains the title of the book, including the phrase “Rare Gems”:

“To me, [a rare gem] is something that is hard to find. It is something that is immensely valuable over a long period of time and, in these cases, people who ultimately shine in what they do when we look back on the path to the current moment, which is of course incredibly exciting in women’s basketball. These are shining examples that have helped lead us on the way to where we are now.”

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